Posted by: reformedmusings | April 29, 2012

Upgrading a Dell 1545 Inspiron from Ubuntu 10.04 LTS to Ubuntu 12.04 LTS

After my abysmal experience with my desktop computer, I almost decided not to upgrade the laptop. It has preformed like a champ on 10.04 LTS for a couple of years now. However, I decided to give it a shot since it doesn’t have an nVidia graphics system in it. The laptop is far from state of the art. It’s an older Dell Inspiron 1545 with an Intel Core 2 Duo T6400, 3 GB DDR2 SDRAM, and Intel Grpahics Media Accelerator X4500HD video. It originally came with Ubuntu 9.04 preloaded.

I had to reset the System Update application to show normal upgrades. Setting it to Long Term Support upgrades did not produce a listing for Precise 12.04 LTS, so I had to go through all the intermediate upgrades – 10.10, 11.04, 11.10, and finally 12.04 – individually.

Going through all the upgrades took about 3.5 hours, but went very smoothly. The laptop had a simple setup. The individual upgrades each ran with only a single intervention for one question. I’m sure that the extremely basic Compiz setup helped.

At the end of four successive version upgrades, I had an up-to-date Ubuntu Precise 12.04 LTS system that worked perfectly, with not a single hassle getting there. Performance is very snappy on the older hardware. Kudos to Canonical and the Ubuntu team.



  1. […] it worked out in the end. On the other hand, upgrading my laptop from Ubuntu 10.04 LTS to 12.04 LTS proceeded without incident or error. I had one last upgrade to […]

  2. Have you had any freezing problems? I can’t run 11.10-12.04 on my Dell because of kernel freezes. I am thinking of updating my dad’s Inspiron just like yours from 10.10 to 12.04.

    • Hi Shawn,

      I have no issues at all with the laptop. I think that the simplicity of the setup helped.


      • I guess I’ll introduce him to Unity then:-) I really wanted to get him on the LTS release. His Inspiron has the same specs as yours. My Studio laptop hasn’t liked kernel 3.0 and up. Some weird kernel lockup that leaves no logs to debug. The only solution is to manually power it down. I’m frozen at 11.04. I was just gun shy. Thanks for the info!

        • Please let me know how it goes.

          • Everything has turned out perfect. The only problem was the dash was empty. I had to delete ~./local/share/zeigiest to get it to show apps/files correctly. The Fn keys were always a point of contention for my dad. He would always hit the F2 switch and disable his wireless card. The bios has an option to make you have to press and hold the Fn key before the Fn keys will work. He should be good to go! Thanks again.

            • Great news! Glad that it worked out so well. Ubuntu has come a long way with laptop support in recent years.

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